2000AD #2229 Review

by Gavin Johnston on April 27, 2021

Writers: Kenneth Niemand; TC Eglington; Kek-W; Mark McCann; Dan Abnett
Artists: Tom Foster; Simon Davies; Dave Kendall; Glenn Fabry; Richard Elson
Colours: Chris Blythe; John Charles
Letters: Annie Parkhouse; Simon Bowland; Jim Campbell
Publisher: Rebellion



Former Judge Asher is on the run through the sewers of Mega City One in Judge Dredd: The Penitent Man. Returning to the city after completing a sentence for murder, Asher has been targeted by the Judges’ own internal affairs division in a campaign of brutal harassment. Dredd might not be keen on ex-judges, but he likes corrupt ones a lot less.

This episode is a fairly straightforward: Asher is pursued by an SJS death squad, who are in turn pursued by Dredd – but it’s packed with so much character. Asher’s droid co-workers show up and share a joke about safety protocols. The SJS’s robo-judges make an appearance, and Dredd reflects on his earliest interactions with robot law enforcement in a storyline which was (gulp) 29 years ago.



The events of a doomed camping trip are finally revealed in Thistlebone: Poisoned Roots. The light and friendly art style adopted by Simon Davis for these flashbacks just up the creepy factor. It’s the sort of art style you might see in a story aimed at kids, but features character’s slowly going violently mad in the woods.



Also incredibly creepy is Visions of Deadworld: Transpolar, wherein the Dark Judges are finalising their grasp on power and the bodies pile high in their thousands. In an arctic oil drilling facility, an isolated group of engineers find themselves the latest target.

The suddenness of the brutality here is quite a shock, even for a Deadworld story. After reassuring themselves that all wars are basically battles over access to energy, the engineers take the view that the Dark Judges can be negotiated with...and then the decapitations begin. Before long, hideous mutant are graphically tearing people to bits left, right and centre. If you enjoy gory horror, then this is another great chapter in the Deadworld saga, and it’s nice to see judges from across the world being dragged into this vision of the apocalypse.



In one-off Future Shock: Regarding Henry, a teenage girl is sent for treatment to prevent antisocial thoughts.

Main character Jane is required to have some sort of behaviour modification after screening discovers that she might possibly become antisocial, then struggles with the idea of empathy and wonders whether she might as well be antisocial in the short time she has left. It’s a similar moral conundrum as that presented by Burgess’s Clockwork Orange – if you have no choice but to be good, are you really good?

It’s an interesting idea, and nice to see such big ideas being confronted in a five page strip...However, there’s also a whole bunch packed in before we get to the final twist, and not everything flows. The opening few panels involve the death of a pet, but don’t seem to have any bearing on the rest of the story. The title is taken from a Harrison Ford film that again seems unrelated. There are twists involving imaginary friends and technology, and even after reading it several times I’m not entirely sure I understand what’s going on here.



Feral & Foe is just fun. Last week, I compared it to a fantasy based MMORPG, where the players occasionally give up on roleplaying and just muck around. Every episode is another chunk of quest, where the heroes are fetching something or battling something, all whilst bickering over details of the world where they live. The plot point that a couple of the characters have been subjected to a Freaky-Friday body swap adds to the idea of people playing a role in an adventure.

This week, the trio travel through The Forests of Dewclaw, and meet some tree people who invite them to drink their “special milk”. It’s a bunch of innuendo, a bit of backstory, a couple of revelations, and a set up for the next adventure. Very nice.

Our Score:


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